Disappointed but not surprised. That's the appropriate reaction to the eye-popping 2.9% annual CPI inflation rate for December.
We knew that inflation would jump in these few months, thanks to the distorting effect of the VAT cut in December of 2008. When the temporary VAT cut was announced in late 2008, Mervyn King said it should guarantee a happy Christmas for 2009, as shoppers rushed to buy before prices went back up this month.
He also will have known that it was going to play havoc with his inflation target.
To judge by the Christmas returns announced in the past few weeks, his forecast came true for many retailers. And it looks as though some of them took the opportunity to put their prices up a month early (or at least not to discount as heavily as they did in that gloomy Christmas of 2008).
All told, Capital Economics calculates that about three-quarters of the headline rise in the CPI from 1.9% in November to 2.9% in December is due to the "level" effect of last year's VAT cut. The fact that oil prices were falling sharply at the end of 2008 had an impact as well.
It's not over yet. We can expect the rise back to 17.5% in January to push the headline rate up even higher, perhaps to 3.5% or more, before falling back.
If - or when - inflation goes over 3%, it will be amusing to read Mr King's letter to the chancellor, explaining how the chancellor's own policy has caused the Bank to miss the target the government set for the MPC. But for the Bank, the amusement value may be somewhat diluted by the poor timing.
On 4 February, the MPC will vote on whether to continue with their quantitative easing policy or put it on hold. Perhaps thankfully, that will be well before the January CPI figures come out on 16 Feb, and the MPC won't have any inside information on what the January number will be. But you can expect them to fully factor it into their inflation report forecasts, which we'll see a week later.
As I've discussed before, even if the Bank's policy makers opt to stop buying gilts for a while, they will be at pains to signal to the markets - and all of us - that it doesn't necessarily mean the end of the policy, or that they are expecting a strong recovery.
Explaining their actions will be hard enough, without also having to explain why inflation is about to head over 3%.
But at least this inconvenient jump in inflation will reverse itself in a few months. The challenge of engineering a solid recovery in the broader economy and a smooth exit from QE is going to weigh on the Bank for rather longer.